Q: What do you mean Vegan?
A: Most soaps are not vegetarian, containing tallow (cow fat) or lard (pig fat). The use of animals in the current system of factory farming is cruel and extremely hard on the environment. [Read more in the NY Times]
Strawberry Hedgehog products are 100% vegan, meaning they are free of any animal byproducts. Many “natural” products or products that claim to be “cruelty free” continue to use animal byproducts, such as collagen, gelatin, beeswax, goat’s milk, or cow’s milk contributing not only to cruelty to these creatures but also to environmental problems. By buying vegan you are doing your small part to not financially contribute to these problems. Please read below for more info.
Q: Is Strawberry Hedgehog All Natural?
A: Yes. While “natural” is a term thrown haphazardly about in the cosmetics industry we at Strawberry Hedgehogmean it. ! What do we mean? All of our ingredients are natural, i.e. from nature. Period. Most are plant based with some natural minerals. We do not use synthetic chemicals (fragrances, preservatives, or otherwise) in our products and therefore our shelf lives are shorter than conventional products on the market. Our natural blend of plant extract preservatives give a minimum shelf life of about 3 months (longer if refrigerated) to our body creams while our soaps, salts, shea butter, and oils will last at least one year but more likely much longer. We make all of our goodies fresh to order to give you the most effective, fresh, and healthy products possible.
Q: Where does your Palm oil come from?
A: A small amount of South American palm oil is used in combination with coconut oil as the base for my soaps. My palm oil comes from multiple organic suppliers in Brazil and Columbia so they are not all certified sustainable/RSPO but they are organic so that seems a major step in the right direction. The impact of palm oil is a concern of mine, I am happy to say that clear-cutting of rainforest in Brazil associated with agriculture fell by 27% in 2012, and the issue of chemical run-off into surrounding streams and groundwater is not an issue with organic growth. The major palm impact is in Indonesia and surrounding areas which is why I choose to avoid those oils. There is no perfect solution but I keep an open mind and do my best. Organic palm allows my soap to remain chemical free (unlike Lush for example that went palm free but switched to harmful chemical detergents/SLS) or other soap producers that are able to use animal products such as lard, tallow or goats milk in place of palm.
Q: What's up with Parabens?
A: Click here for more info on parabens. The most common no-no ingredient to be found in many conventional and even “natural” skin care products are the nasty synthetic preservatives like parabens found in nearly all of them. Parabens (usually Methyl or Propyl paraben) are used as preservatives to kill bacteria that can grow in products but these chemicals can build up in your system, they have been found in cancerous breast tissue, and they can lead to annoying to severe allergies. We at Strawberry Hedgehog believe it is best to avoid them all together and we go to great lengths to keep them out of our ingredients and our products to ensure the quality and safety of our products. In its place we make our products fresh to order and use a blend of natural plant extracts to inhibit microbial growth.
Q: What about fragrance? Synthetic Dyes?
A: This goes along with the "natural" answer but I will explain. Strawberry Hedgehog uses only colors and scents derived from plants and minerals. Herbs, fruit extracts, vegetable extracts, algae, and natural minerals such as rutile (titanium dioxide), hematite, lapis, and mica are exclusively used to create interesting color variation in our beautiful soaps. Because we use only pure essential oils and organic plant extracts rather than chemical fragrances, you don’t have to worry about Phthalates or mysterious petrochemicals either. The term "Fragrance" is a blanket legal statement used in the cosmetics industry to allow companies the "secret sauce" argument of not including all ingredients -- companies that use the term "fragrance" -- even if it is "phthalate-free" are not disclosing their true ingredients and it is not safe to assume "natural fragrance" is any better. Phthalates are of growing concern, particularly for children and women of childbearing age, according to recent studies:
Click here for information from the Centers for Disease Control linking phalates with possible developmental and reproductive issues.
Click here for a study by the University of Rochester linking phthalates to the emasculation of baby boys.
Q: What about Sulfates?
A: Sulfates, the inexpensive ingredients including Sodium Laurel or Laureth Sulfate in the name, are the synthetic detergents that companies use to create suds in shampoo and body wash. Research has shown that these sulfates, while successful at making frothy bubbles, can actually damage skin and hair. Strawberry Hedgehog offers fabulous lather and suds without the risk of sulfates in our natural handmade soaps.
Q: How long does it take to get my order?
A: Strawberry Hedgehog uses USPS Priority Mail for all shipments. Please allow 7-10 days for your products to be freshly made and 2-3 days for them to be shipped. You will receive an e-mail notification to confirm your order and again when your order has shipped.